A team led by a University of Massachusetts chemical engineer has developed a low-cost, high-yield process for making one of the most common plastics using plant matter rather than petroleum. The new process produces polyethylene terephthalate, or PET, which is used widely in soda and water bottles, as well as in synthetic fabrics such as polyester, reports PETCore.
“You can mix our renewable chemical with the petroleum-based material and the consumer would not be able to tell the difference,” said Paul J. Dauenhauer, an assistant professor of chemical engineering, who led the team of researchers from UMass and University of Delaware.
Tags: PET plastics, petroleum, p-xylene
Source: Emballage Digest, 2012-05-25.